The Two Noble Kinsmen


Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V

A short flourish of cornets, and shouts within. Enter

Theseus, Hippolyta, Pirithous, Emilia, Arcite as a

countryman, with a garland, and other countrymen

and attendants


(to Arcite)

You have done worthily; I have not seen,

Since Hercules, a man of tougher sinews.
sinew (n.) 1 muscle

Whate'er you are, you run the best and wrestle

That these times can allow.
allow (v.) 1 acknowledge, commend, receive [with praise]


                         I am proud to please you.


What country bred you?


                         This; but far off, prince.


Are you a gentleman?


                         My father said so,

And to those gentle uses gave me life.
gentle (adj.) 1 well-born, honourable, noble See Topics: Frequency count
give life bring up, raise, nurture
use (n.) 2 activity, practice, enterprise


Are you his heir?


                         His youngest, sir.


                                                         Your father

Sure is a happy sire, then. What proves you?
prove (v.) 5 justify [one's] claim, establish


A little of all noble qualities;
quality (n.) 2 accomplishment, capacity, ability

I could have kept a hawk, and well have hallowed
hallow, holloa, hollow (v.) 1 shout, yell, cry out

To a deep cry of dogs; I dare not praise

My feat in horsemanship, yet they that knew me
feat (n.) 1 achievement, skill, accomplishment

Would say it was my best piece; last, and greatest,
piece (n.) 4 accomplishment, forte, skill

I would be thought a soldier.
perfect (adj.) 6 complete, totally accomplished, well-trained


                         You are perfect.


Upon my soul, a proper man.
proper (adj.) 1 good-looking, handsome, comely


                         He is so.


How do you like him, lady?


                         I admire him;

I have not seen so young a man so noble –

If he say true – of his sort.
sort (n.) 1 class, level, social rank



His mother was a wondrous handsome woman;

His face methinks goes that way.
go (v.) 6 be [like], suggest, present itself
methinks(t), methought(s) (v.) it seems /seemed to me See Topics: Frequency count


                         But his body

And fiery mind illustrate a brave father.
brave (adj.) 2 noble, worthy, excellent
illustrate (v.) show, indicate, make evident


Mark how his virtue, like a hidden sun,
mark (v.) 1 note, pay attention [to], take notice [of] See Topics: Frequency count
virtue (n.) 1 quality, accomplishment, ability

Breaks through his baser garments.
base (adj.) 3 poor, wretched, of low quality See Topics: Frequency count
get (v.) 1 beget, conceive, breed


                         He's well got, sure.


What made you seek this place, sir?


                         Noble Theseus,

To purchase name, and do my ablest service
name (n.) 1 reputation, fame, renown
purchase (v.) 1 acquire, obtain, win

To such a well-found wonder as thy worth;
well-found (adj.) 1 of proven merit, of established reputation, commendable

For only in thy court, of all the world,

Dwells fair-eyed honour.


                         All his words are worthy.


Sir, we are much indebted to your travel,
travail, travel (n.) 2 journeying, travel [often overlapping with sense 1]

Nor shall you lose your wish; Pirithous,

Dispose of this fair gentleman.
dispose of (v.) make arrangements for


                         Thanks, Theseus.

(To Arcite)

Whate'er you are you're mine, and I shall give you

To a most noble service, to this lady,

This bright young virgin; pray observe her goodness.
goodness (n.) 2 excellence, virtue, good qualities
observe (v.) 2 honour, wait upon, show all courtesy to

You have honoured her fair birthday with your virtues,

And as your due, you're hers; kiss her fair hand, sir.


Sir, you're a noble giver. (To Emilia) Dearest beauty,

Thus let me seal my vowed faith.

He kisses her hand

                         When your servant,

Your most unworthy creature, but offends you,

Command him die; he shall.


                         That were too cruel.

If you deserve well, sir, I shall soon see't.

You're mine;

And somewhat better than your rank I'll use you.
use (v.) 2 treat, deal with, manage


I'll see you furnished, and because you say
furnish (v.) 3 dress, clothe, equip, fit out

You are a horseman, I must needs entreat you

This afternoon to ride; but 'tis a rough one.
rough (adj.) 5 difficult to manage, not thoroughly trained


I like him better, prince; I shall not then

Freeze in my saddle.


(to Hippolyta)

                         Sweet, you must be ready,

And you, Emilia, and you, friend, and all,

Tomorrow by the sun, to do observance
observance (n.) 2 honour, dutiful ceremony, due respect
sun (n.) sunrise, dawn, daybreak

To flowery May, in Dian's wood. Wait well, sir,

Upon your mistress; Emily, I hope

He shall not go afoot.


                         That were a shame, sir,

While I have horses. (To Arcite) Take your choice, and what

You want at any time, let me but know it;
want (v.) 4 require, demand, need

If you serve faithfully, I dare assure you

You'll find a loving mistress.


                         If I do not,

Let me find that my father ever hated,

Disgrace and blows.


                         Go lead the way; you have won it.

It shall be so; you shall receive all dues

Fit for the honour you have won, 'twere wrong else. –

Sister, beshrew my heart, you have a servant
beshrew, 'shrew (v.) 1 curse, devil take, evil befall See Topics: Frequency count

That, if I were a woman, would be master;

But you are wise.


                         I hope, too wise for that, sir.

Flourish. Exeunt
wise (adj.) 1 discreet, sensible, prudent

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